RIDGELAND, Miss. — Southern AgCredit, a rural lending cooperative, recently returned over $8 million in cash patronage to its customer-owners in Mississippi and Louisiana. Checks were mailed in late February. This marks the 20th consecutive year of the co-op’s patronage program.
In addition to the cash distribution, the association also allocated an additional $6.6 million in equities to their borrowers’ accounts, some of which may be eligible for future distribution at the board of directors’ discretion.
“There are not many lenders who offer a profit-sharing plan for borrowers, but that’s exactly what we do at Southern AgCredit,” said Joe Hayman, Southern AgCredit chief executive officer. “We are pleased that our cooperative has the financial strength to provide this patronage refund to our customers, who collectively own the business.
“We are committed to sharing our earnings with them, thereby reducing the effective interest rate on their loans,” Hayman continued. “On average, this distribution amounts to approximately a 1.00 percent rate reduction!
”The Southern AgCredit Board of Directors approved the patronage dividend for borrowers based on the financing cooperative’s solid 2015 earnings. Every year, the Southern AgCredit board reviews the association’s financial position and determines how much of the net earnings can be returned as a patronage.
This year, the board approved 100 percent of patronage eligible earnings to be allocated in the form of 55 percent cash and 45 percent allocated equities. Borrowers are only taxed on the cash distribution.
Southern AgCredit is a full-service cooperative lender specializing in financing rural land and agricultural operations in Mississippi and Louisiana. It is a member of the nationwide Farm Credit System, the nation’s single largest source of loans for agriculture, agribusiness, rural real estate and country homes. For more information, visit www.southernagcredit.com.
For more information, call Joe Hayman, Southern AgCredit CEO, at (601) 499-2820.